Reward offered for suspected killer of father shot at Bellflower party

Detectives and family members of a 25-year-old father of two who was gunned down in January in Bellflower appealed to the public today for information on the whereabouts of the 30-year-old Riverside County man suspected in the killing.

Oscar Ruiz, of Compton, the father of 1- and 10-year-old sons, was killed in the early morning hours of Jan. 20, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Marco Anthony Garay, who investigators named as a suspect. Photo courtesy LASD.

Marco Anthony Garay, who investigators named as a suspect. Photo courtesy LASD.

A $10,000 reward offered by the county Board of Supervisors for information leading to the arrest of the suspect, identified as Marco Anthony Garay of Hesperia, was announced at a Thursday morning news conference at the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau.

According to investigators, Ruiz was summoned to the 1700 block of Downey Avenue by his girlfriend, who had gotten into a fight with other women at a family party.

“The girlfriend phoned family members and asked for a ride home; they, in turn, called [Ruiz],” according to a sheriff’s department statement. “When [Ruiz] and the family members arrived at the party, [Ruiz] noticed some party goers followed the girlfriend out of the party and into the street.”

A second fight broke out, during which Ruiz was attacked.

“When [Ruiz] arrived, he was truly an innocent victim in this case,” sheriff’s Lt. Charles Calderaro said at the news conference.

“He tried to defuse the situation. He said, ‘Hey, we don’t want any problems. All I want to do is go home.’ And at that point … the suspect began firing at him.”

Marco Anthony Garay, who investigators named as a suspect. Photo courtesy LASD.

Marco Anthony Garay, who investigators named as a suspect. Photo courtesy LASD.

Ruiz was struck in the upper body and pronounced dead at the scene.

Detectives said the victim and suspect knew each other, but were not friends.

Anyone with information regarding Garay’s whereabouts or the shooting was urged to call sheriff’s homicide detectives at 323-890-5500.

Anonymous tips may be submitted through Crime Stoppers by calling 800-222-TIPS or at lacrimestoppers.org.

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